YK MYK WEATHER TODAY MAX 34 C MIN 28 C BY POLLS: BENGAL BJP DIVIDED ON FINAL STRATEGY TO COMBAT TMC OPINION Rainfall may occur. DESPITE MISSING MEDAL, WOMEN'S HOCKEY HAS BRIGHT FUTURE: TETE SPORTS Morning India Rs. 3 KOLKATA WEDNESDAY, 8 SEPT, 2021 PG-12, YEAR— 8, ISSUE—113 (RNI NO: WBENG / 2014 / 56803) Delhi HC issues Faith may be personal but notice to NHRC on festivals are universal: Mamata BJYM member plea MI NEWS SERVICE KOLKATA: Faith may be personal but our festivals are universal, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee said on Tuesday. Speaking at a meeting with different Durga Puja committees, she further appealed to the people of the State to follow COVID-19 protocols during the upcoming celebrations. Durga puja is scheduled to be held between October 11 and October 15 this year. With the threat of a third wave of COVID-19 infections looming large, Durga Puja committees are wary of going ahead with their plans. Last year, the State government banned all cultural gatherings in a bid to contain the spread of COVID19. This had led to staggered Durga puja celebrations across the State. This year, West Bengal government has also decided to provide Rs 50,000 as financial assistance to Durga Puja committees across the State, CM Banerjee said on Tuesday. Similarly, organisers will also be able to use electricity for the pandals at half the price during the four-day celebrations. "I urge the Puja committees to spread awareness about the State government's various social schemes to people during the Puja," Mamata Banerjee said. Stating that the people of West Bengal faced "a lot of problems" due to the financial crisis last year, CM Mamata Banerjee said her government would not announce any new curbs during the Durga Puja celebrations this year. She added, "We must be careful that no one is able to provoke violence during the festivities." Asked about whether night cur- MI NEWS SERVICE Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee during a meeting to discuss about preparations for upcoming Durga Puja at Netaji Indoor Stadium on Tuesday. few will be relaxed during the Durga Puja celebrations, Mamata Banerjee said a decision in this regard will be taken after the by-polls. The Election Commission of India will hold by-elections for three vacant Assembly seats in West Bengal - Bhawanipore, Samserganj and Jangipur - on September 30. Votes for the same will be counted on October 3. The Chief Minister also said, 'If the meeting was held after the byelection then it would have been late which is why we are holding the meeting taking the Election Commission's permission. There are 35,000 Puja committees in the State and 2500 Pujas in Kolkata. Among them, 1500 are womenorganised Pujas. Masks will be distributed and emphasis will be given on sanitisation. Since all pandal hoppers go out at night, we will keep in consideration about relaxation in night curfew.' She added, from October 15 to October 19 idol immersions will take place. Whether Puja Carnival can be organised or not seen will depend on the COVID situation. The clubs will have to promote COVID awareness. If they can promote the govt schemes along with that then it will be good. The British Council, IIT-Kharagpur and Queen Mary University had done a survey and had shown that Puja celebrations create business of Rs. 32377 crore. Mamata further said, 'I urge UNESCO to attribute Durga Puja as an intangible, cultural and global festival. I hope that the way COVID is controlled in Bengal it will be maintained. Clubs, police force, fire brigade should all work together.' NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday issued notice to National Human Right Commission (NHRC) on a plea moved by a member of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) claiming police brutality and excessiveness on youth including women during a peaceful BJYM's 'Nabanna Chalo Rally' in West Bengal on October 8 last year. The petitioner, Rohit Verma, states that he on October 13, 2020, filed a complaint in NHRC and sought inquiry against the individuals and authorities responsible for the commission of unwarranted brutality and excesses on the participants at the peaceful rally which included the petitioner. But, so far, the BJYM has not received any acknowledgement from the respondent. This clearly shows the intent of the respondent (NHRC) to sleep over the complaint and let the people of West Bengal suffer at the hands of a cruel and sadistic police establishment and a despotic ruling dispensation, the plea stated. The Bench of Justice Rekha Palli on Tuesday sought the response of NHRC through its registrar and slated the matter for October 10. Petitioner seeks directions from Court to the concerned authority/NHRC to conduct an inquiry into the violence that ensued in West Bengal on October 8, 2020. Petitioner through Advocates Kabir Shankar Bose along with Advocate Surjendu Sankar Das states that the large-scale brutality committed by the police authorities on BJYM members who were peacefully protesting were sanctioned by the State Government in an attempt to crush and stifle dissent by brute force. The plea stated that in the complaint filed before NHRC various disturbing instances of gross misconduct by the police authorities against the participants of a peaceful rally which were ordered and sanctioned by the Government of West Bengal were highlighted. The large-scale brutality committed by the police authorities were ordered and sanctioned by the Government of West Bengal in an attempt to crush and stifle dissent by brute force. The complainant alleged that the vicious attacks by the police authorities at the behest of the State government are politically motivated and focused against the supporters of any political party or faction which is not the ruling party of the State of West Bengal, namely, the All-India Trinamool Congress (TMC). These acts demonstrate that the police of the State of West Bengal has been reduced to a mere pawn in the hands of the TMC. ‘Whole world suffering’: SC on urgent hearing plea for Deoghar temple reopening NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to give urgent hearing on a plea seeking direction to the Jharkhand government to consider reopening of Baba Baidyanath Jyotirlinga Temple, one of the twelve 'jyotirlingas' of Lord Shiva, in the state's Deoghar. Advocate Prashant Kumar, representing the petitioner, submitted before a bench headed by Chief Justice N.V. Ramana that number of Covid cases in Jharkhand are very low. He submitted that temple can be considered for reopening for devotees for two months during 'Shravani Mela' and pointed out that entries were restricted due to Covid-19 protocol. At this, Chief Justice Ramana said: "Why should we give priority to this. When the whole world is suffering, you want to reopen." The bench, also comprising Justices Surya Kant and A.S. Bopanna, said there was no urgency to hear the plea. As the advocate insisted for early hearing on the plea, the Chief Justice, disallowing the urgent listing of the petition, said: "Yes, yes, there is no Covid you know." In July last year, the top court had declined to interfere with the Jharkhand High Court order passed, on a plea of BJP MP Nishikant Dubey, rejecting the prayer for allowing reopening of both the historic temples nd holding of annual Shravani Mela in Deoghar, and only allowed virtual darshan. Then, the top court had noted that when country was in the process of re-opening, then religious places - which includes temples, mosques, and churches could be considered for reopening. The apex court had then asked the state government to examine opening the temple complex for devotees. As farmer groups continue to protest against the three contentious farm laws and scores gathered at a new grain mandi to attend the Kisan Mahapanchayat in Haryana's Karnal on Tuesday, one of the members on the Supreme Court constituted committee on the farm laws has written to Chief Justice N.V. Ramana seeking release of the panel's report into public domain and sharing it with the government. Anil Ghanwat, president Shetkari Sanghatana, in a letter to the CJI said: "The report addressed all apprehensions of the farmers. The committee was confident that the recommendations will pave the way to resolve the on-going farmers' agitation" that started on November 26, 2020. Ghanwat emphasized that as a member of the committee, especially representing the farmers' community, he is pained that the issue raised by the farmers has not been resolved so far and the agitation is continuing. "I feel that the report has not been given any attention by the Supreme Court. "I am humbly pleading the Supreme Court to kindly release AT A GLANCE NATIONAL JAL JEEVAN MISSION TEAM VISITS JHARKHAND CHHATTISGARH CM'S FATHER JAILED FOR HATE SPEECH Rs 2,479 cr Central fund for implementation of JJM in state RAIPUR: Nand Kumar Baghel (86), the father of Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel, was on Tuesday sent to judicial custody till September 21 as he refused to seek bail in a local court where he was produced after being arrested on charges of making a hate speech. Chhattisgarh police, while acting on an FIR lodged at Raipur's DD Nagar police station on a complaint of Sarv Brahmin Samaj, arrested Baghel senior from Delhi and brought him to Raipur. He was later produced before a judicial magistrate where he flatly refused to seek bail. The court then sent him to 14-day judicial remand. CORONA METER INDIA TOTAL CASES: 32,998,017 TOTAL DEATHS: 440,682 WORLD TOTAL CASES: 221,319,064 TOTAL DEATHS: 4,579,008 NEW DELHI: A multi-disciplinary team from the National Jal Jeevan Mission is visiting Jharkhand during 6- 9 September, 2021 in four districts of Ranchi, Dhanbad, Khunti, and Hazaribagh. During the visit of NJJM team to the State, team members are visiting 3-5 villages daily in the district depending on the feasibility. The visiting team will discuss various aspects of progress and implementation of the mission in the State, understanding ground situation as well as discuss about the saturation plan for 100% coverage of households for making provision of tap water connections. They are interacting with district officials, local village community, members of Gram Panchayats, etc. After the visit to districts, they will interact with the State team. Jharkhand State is planning 100% FHTCs to all households by 2023-24. Out of 59.24 lakh rural households Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Union Minister, Jal Shakti in the State, 8.60 lakh (14.5%) households tap water connections. On 15th August, 2019, at the time of launch of Jal Jeevan Mission, only 3.45 lakh (5.85%) rural households in Jharkhand had tap water supply. In 24 months, 5.15 lakh households (8.7%) in the State have been provided tap water connections. However, in comparison to national average of 23% increase in providing tap water supply in rural households, the progress made in Jharkhand is very slow. In 2020-21, Rs 572.24 Crore Central grant was allocated to the State but it could draw only Rs 143.06 Crore and surrendered Rs 429.18 Crore meant for tap water supply in rural areas due to slow pace of implementation. To assist the State to provide tap water supply to every household by 2024, Union Minister, Jal Shakti, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat has increased the Central allocation four-folds to Rs 2,479.88 Crore. the report for implementation of its recommendations for peaceful resolution of the stalemate to the farmers satisfaction at the earliest," said Ghanwat. The top court had suspended the implementation of the three farm laws and constituted a committee to report on these laws on January 12, this year. Ghanwat was nominated as one of the members of the committee to represent the farming community. Mandu BDO caught taking bribe by ACB MANOJ SINHA RAMGARH: A team of Hazaribag Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) on Tuesday arrested Vinay Kumar, posted as Mandu block BDO, the police said. Kumar was caught red handed while taking a bribe of rupees 45,000. The ACB team took the accused away to Hazaribag, where he will be interrogated. Sources said that Kumar had allegedly demanded a bribe of Rs 45,000 for doing favours from Upendra Singh, a former Mukhiya of Manjla Chumba located in Mandu police station area. As Singh was not willing to give away bribe, he approached the Hazaribagh ACB. After receiving the complaint, the ACB team got the matter verified. During verification, the demand for bribe was found to be true. The team of Hazaribag ACB took the action on Tuesday and arrested the BDO red-handed while he was accepting the money at his residence. Taliban leader Mullah Akhund to lead new Afghan govt NEW DELHI: The Taliban announced on Tuesday that Mullah Mohammad Hasan Akhund will be the leader of the new Afghanistan government. Taliban's chief spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said that Taliban co-founder Abdul Ghani Baradar will be the deputy leader. Sirajuddin Haqqani, the son of the founder of the Haqqani Network, designated as a terrorist organisation by the US, will be the new interior minister. Akhund is presently the head of the Taliban's powerful decisionmaking body, Rehbari Shura or the leadership council. He belongs to Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban, and was among the founders of the armed movement, The News reported. "He worked for 20 years as the head of Rehbari Shura and earned himself a very good reputation. He is a religious leader rather than having a military background and is known for his character and devotion," said a Taliban leader. He added that Akhund remained close to Sheikh Hibatullah Akhunzada for 20 years. According to the Taliban, Akhund had worked in important positions during the previous Taliban government in Afghanistan. He was the foreign minister before being made the deputy prime minister when Mullah Mohammad Rabbani Akhund was the prime minister, the report said. Similarly, the Taliban said that the name of another veteran leader, Sirajuddin Haqqani, head of the Haqqani Network, has been proposed for the federal interior minister's post, the report said. He has also been authorised to nominate governors for the eastern provinces, from where the Haqqani Network used to draw its force, including Paktia, Paktika, Khost, Gardez, Nangarhar and Kunar. Similarly, Mullah Yaqoob, the son of Taliban founder Mullah Mohammad Omar, has been approved as Afghanistan's defence minister. Mullah Yaqoob was a student of Sheikh Hibatullah Akhunzada in his madrassa and remained close to him. According to the Taliban sources, Sheikh Hibatullah Akhunzada has always respected Mullah Yaqoob due to his father and Yaqoob's dedication to his work. It was Sheikh Habibullah who appointed Mullah Yaqoob as commander-in-chief of their armed fighters and then chose him as head of the powerful military commission, the report said. Yaqoob personally led the recent armed campaign and first started taking over the rural areas, including districts, and then decided to capture the provinces across the country. People close to Yaqoob told The News that he would take little sleep during the operations and depended on medicines. Some senior Taliban leaders then advised him against taking too much pain.